Death of Wrestling: Gimmick PPVs

Greetings to all… It’s David Davis with my weekly blog: Death of Wrestling. For all of those who read this regularly, you will know that this is not a blog about bashing wrestling; it’s a blog of a frustrated fan, who loves the business and wishes that each week it could be a little better.

Wrestling companies are kind of damned if they do, and damned if they don’t. TNA recently reduced their PPV quota and fans instantly started to wonder whether this is the beginning of the end of TNA. Officially, TNA claim it’s because they want the time to properly build to their PPVs, and I think this is a good idea, and I think it’s something that the WWE should do, although I know they won’t… I read another blog on this site that correctly said that as long the WWE gets enough ‘buys’ then the WWE will continue to stage them. But I do think they have too many PPVs, and they also have too many hours of programming a week, but that is a whole other blog…

The WWE may think it’s ‘best for business’, but the truth is what they really need is quality PPVs that mean something. They currently have so many that apart from Wrestlemania (and perhaps the Royal Rumble) they just don’t have the time to build proper feuds that culminate at the PPVs. Survivor Series is a good example of this. I remember watching it as a kid and the majority of the matches would be traditional 4 on 4 or 5 on 5 elimination matchups. But that kind of match takes a lot of build. Enemies of enemies have to find common ground in order to come together to defeat their foe. This kind of storytelling can’t be done for the whole roster in just the 3 or 4 weeks they have between PPVs.

Another good example of this is Night of Champions; a night where every single belt would be on the line, and every single belt had a proper feud. This was no mean feat as back then there were twice as many belts as there are now! But the WWE also had proper brand separation which allowed the mid-carders to have interesting feuds.

I know I said that I’m enjoying wrestling (the WWE in particular), but the truth is, the whole of WWE programming consists of 3 stories: Daniel Bryan vs HHH (this includes the shield and their individual matches for their respective belts, which are only there to insert the dominance as HHHs goons), Paul Heyman vs CM Punk, and the World Heavyweight title picture. Granted, there are other storylines, but the whole Total Divas match amounted to about 5 minutes on the PPV, so we know how much the WWE really cares about them!

The problem with the WWE being so focused on the main event storylines is that they don’t have the time, or inclination, to build up the undercard feuds. This of course means that on a night where every belt should be defended, the WWE, and its Universe, doesn’t care about half of the championship matches, and this, people, will lead to the DoW. The fact that the Intercontinental title wasn’t even scheduled to be defended on the ‘Night of Champions’ speaks volumes.

In all honesty, I don’t care if every belt is defended or not. In an ideal world every title holder would be in a meaningful feud for their belt. I don’t mean a feud that everyone likes, as we all have personal preference as to what we think is a good feud or not, but whether we love it or hate it; they should be in a feud…

But what I do care about is that if the WWE is going to have so many PPVs and make them gimmicks, then they need to follow through. A Night of Champions without every Champion is like Money in the Bank, without a money in the bank match, and this is just another step down the DoW road…

That’s all folks… As always, post your comments, thoughts and opinions below! Or message me on twitter and let me know what you think the ‘Death of Wrestling’ is and I might just blog about it!!! Peace and I’m out…

  • Rick Yuhnke

    I agree. It makes me think of the old WCW days, when the WCW was at its top. The list of the feuds they had was what pro wrestling is all about. Today, I think the WWE believes the wrestling fan is stupid (they always thought this, but it is worse now) and that we have the attention span of 3 seconds. Well, I know they need to give up something else. To have the US title, Tag titles, and IC title just defended against…is not good. Savage vs Steamboat, Dusty vs Koloff, Road Warriors vs The Powers of Pain. Any of those matches are main events. Would you say Ziggler vs Ambrose is a main event anywhere? Or PTP vs Shield? Or Kofi vs Axel? Bottom line, they have enough talent, but not enough stories.

    • Andy

      Ziggler vs Ambrose would be a great main event if WWE would ever take time to build it up properly.

  • Mike

    This article is good but from the title, I thought it woiulkd more focus on the real gimmick PPVs. NOC is a good example, but Hell in a Cell, TLC, Extreme rules and Elimination Chamber are great examples of gimmick pay per views.

    Like most of you, I was a littleddisappointed with NOC and the age of monthly PPVs need to cease. If the WWE went from 11 to 8 ppvs a year, that would guve time to build proper feuds and make main event ppv matched more exciting. The only problem would be the quality of the weeklky shows.

  • Tremayne

    I agree with a good majority of this article except for one piece. I believe TNA should revert back to doing monthly PPVs, or at the very least add more. 2013 has been one hell of a year for TNA financially and many can agree it’s from taking Impact on the road. While this is true, I believe that if they would have continued doing monthly live PPVs along with them going on the road, we would still have talents like Tara, Joey Ryan, Jesse Sorenson, Madison Ryan and etc to still remain on the roster. Even though the common belief is “nobody was buying the PPVs anyways” a good amount must have been if they where able to afford all the people they released to save money.

  • Albert T

    Sadly, it’s quite probable that TNA actually lost money by doing the One Night Only PPV’s, mainly because they’re rarely advertised. I think if they would’ve just lowered the price for the PPV’s they were already booking, they would’ve seen a modest increase in their financial intake. However, I’ve enjoyed the breathing room that four PPV’s has created, so I’m not as excited about adding more back in to the schedule.